The project to expand folding boxboard production capacity has been completed at the Husum integrated pulp and paperboard mill in Sweden. With the modernisation of the board machine 1 (BM1), the annual production capacity of folding boxboard (FBB) will be increased by 200,000 tons to reach 600,000 tons. This will make the Husum BM1 the largest, and most modern, paperboard machine in Europe and further strengthen Metsä Board’s position as the leading European supplier of folding boxboards.
The expansion of folding boxboard capacity is in response to the growing demand for packaging materials made of renewable resources. The BM1 produces folding boxboards that are lightweight, without sacrificing strength properties, which saves on raw materials usage and helps to reduce the carbon footprint of packaging.
The capacity expansion is realised by extending the length of the board machine and adding more drying capacity. The machine extension is only part of the wide scope project. Improvements have also been done in other parts of the machine line to improve runnability and quality consistency. The off-machine coater has been upgraded to accompany higher speeds and larger jumbo rolls. At the same time the logistics of transporting on site jumbo rolls between the board machines, coater, extrusion coating line and winder is now fully automated. The full production capacity is expected to be reached by the end of 2025.
“By increasing Husum's production capacity, we are responding to the growing demand for packaging materials that support the circular economy. The first phase of the recently completed renewal of the Husum pulp mill further increases the production of bio-based energy and the mill integrate’s energy efficiency. This helps to further reduce the carbon footprint of our products and also helps our customers reach their sustainability targets,” says Mika Joukio, CEO of Metsä Board.
The additional capacity will be directed mainly to the North American and European markets, where the demand growth for Metsä Board's premium lightweight paperboards is expected to continue.
Husum BM1 produces market-leading premium lightweight folding boxboards with a basis weight range of 175–355 g/m2. The products are used for packaging dry food and frozen food, chocolate, confectionery, pharmaceutical and healthcare products, beauty care products as well as for food service and graphic applications.